As it happened: James Murdoch at the Leveson Inquiry

Key points

  • Labour calls on Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt to resign after suggestions during the evidence of News Corporation's James Murdoch that he supported the firm's bid for BSkyB
  • Mr Murdoch denies the culture secretary acted as a "cheerleader" for the bid, as the inquiry hears of emails suggesting regular contact between Mr Hunt's staff and News Corp PR executives
  • Mr Murdoch admits having a brief discussion with PM David Cameron about News Corp's controversial bid to buy out BSkyB at a Christmas dinner on 23 December 2010

Live text

Reporting:

  • Peter Jackson 
  • Andrew McFarlane 

Last updated 24 April 2012

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Good morning and welcome to our live coverage of James Murdoch's evidence to the Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practice and ethics of the press.

As News International chairman, Mr Murdoch was the head of his father Rupert's newspaper operations when the phone-hacking scandal emerged - but he resigned from the post in February.

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Here's Mr Murdoch a short while ago arriving at the Royal Courts of Justice.

James Murdoch

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The inquiry in central London - led by Lord Justice Leveson - is expected to grill him about what he knew about phone hacking and when.

It is the first time either of the Murdochs have appeared before the inquiry. Rupert Murdoch's evidence begins on Wednesday.

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James Murdoch is likely to be asked again whether he was aware of allegations that the practice of illegally intercepting voicemails went beyond News of the World royal reporter Clive Goodman.

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Mr Murdoch tells the inquiry he resigned as BSkyB chairman "for the simple reason that I wanted to avoid becoming a lightening rod".

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When he arrived at News International in 2007, Mr Murdoch says, he wanted a more open, collaborative management structure and brought editors more into management discussions.

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Mr Murdoch is being asked about the legal compliance procedures at the newspapers.

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"Corporate reputation is something that's important to a business in respect to its licence with its customers... legal risk plays into that," says Mr Murdoch.

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Asked if he read the News of the World, Mr Murdoch replies: "I wouldn't say I read all of it. I read it from time to time." Of the Sun, he adds: "I tried to familiarise myself with it."

TWEET

Ross Hawkins, BBC political correspondent

tweets: James Murdoch said he received assurances about editorial training & ethics #Leveson

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